The hammer will go down on hundreds of auction lots at Athlone Institute of Technology on Saturday April 13, as part of a fundraising programme for improvements to St Mary’s Church of Ireland, Church Street, Athlone.The auction will be held in the John McCormack Hall in Athlone IT on the Dublin Road, with viewing commencing at 1pm and bidding starting at 2pm.
The landmark town centre building, parts of which date back to 1622, is in need of both internal and external refurbishment, especially now that the Church Street regeneration project is nearing completion. It is hoped that funds will stretch to cleaning the stonework which will further enhance the appearance of the streetscape. A further aim of the fundraising initiative is to provide improved access for those with limited mobility, including wheelchair users.
Raffle tickets are already on sale with some very generous prizes on offer, including a three-night Kilkenny class cruiser hire from Banagher with Carrickcraft, theatre tickets, dinner at local restaurants and a €100 voucher for SuperValu, Ballymahon Road.
Athlone Union of Parishes rector, Revd William Steacy, is enthusiastic about the whole project, saying “The church is an integral part of the centre of the town, and we are keen to contribute to the overall upgrade of the area. In addition, we need to improve access for everyone, both local and visitors. We welcome groups of all denominations to the church, and we want to ensure that we have better facilities both inside and out to cater for different needs.”
In addition to the auction itself, there will be bric-a-brac, plant and book stalls and refreshments available.
Anyone wishing to donate saleable items to the auction, or to buy raffle tickets can contact Revd Steacy on (090) 6479984 or churchwarden Roy Lowe on 087 8213134.